Monday, April 16, 2012

Philadelphia Inquirer Wins Pulitzer Prize For Series On "Violence In Philadelphia Public Schools"

Inquirer wins Pulitzer Prize for school violence series

As a graduate of the Philadelphia Public School System I take no pride in the fact that the Philly Inquirer had such an abundant amount of source material to work with in their expose' on violence within the schools.
I congratulate them on their courage to go against the grain, exposing this shame that some people would rather not talk about - OR - if they do so - transform it into an indictment against the larger society that "made the kids violent" due to claims of "benign neglect".

This Little Black Girl From Arkansas Desired To Go To School To Obtain A Quality Education.
If We Maintain The Perspective Of The Student - Can We Say That A Little Black Girl In The
School District Of Philadelphia 2012 Can Go To School In Peace, This After "Favorable People Are In Power"?

The phrase that I recall most vividly was what I heard from a local activist regarding her struggle to effect change within the schools:

"Once we get favorable people in power, who love Black children and care for the Black community..................things will be different in our schools".

By any reasonable measure this line in the sand has been achieved - in fact years ago.
Unfortunately few of our people will return back to the promises made at the start of "The Struggle" as they work to fully understand why in their "victory" in the way of power aggregation - the Black community was made to suffer a tremendous loss.

Unfortunately none of this will be seen as a CIVIL RIGHTS VIOLATION because - in this case a SELF-INDICTMENT would be rendered upon the adults in the community who's failed governance allowed this to happen.

Until the Black Rank & File comes to grips with the COSTS of going along with the narrative and priorities that others set forth for them to "Struggle"

Assault On Learning In The Philadelphia School System

The Inquirer's investigation of the climate of pervasive violence in Philadelphia's public schools Monday won the Pulitzer Prize for public service, the profession's most prestigious honor.
The award is the 19th Pulitzer Prize for the 183-year-old newspaper and its first since 1997.
The seven-part series, "Assault on Learning," revealed that violence in city schools was widespread and underreported, with 30,000 serious incidents over the last five school years. Those findings were later corroborated by a Philadelphia School District blue-ribbon panel on safety, spurred an overhaul of incident reporting in the district, and prompted the hiring of a state-funded safe-schools advocate.
Shortly after 3 p.m., journalists in the newsroom erupted into applause, hugs and whoops when the announcement came that The Inquirer had won.
In its announcement, the Pulitzer committee said the series used "powerful print narratives and videos to illuminate crimes committed by children against children and to stir reforms to improve safety for teachers and students."
The idea for the series, which ran March 27-April 2, 2011, emerged after racial violence erupted among students at South Philadelphia High School in December 2009.
"The future of any great American city depends on providing a safe environment in which young people can learn," said Inquirer Editor Stan Wischnowski. "Our series exposed in graphic and painstaking detail the ways in which we are failing this generation."
The Pulitzer Prize for public-service is always awarded to a newspaper, rather than an individual. "Assault on Learning" was the culmination of at least a year of effort by a team of Inquirer reporters, editors, photographers, designers, and multi-media presentation specialists.
Reporters John Sullivan, Susan Snyder, Kristen A. Graham, Dylan Purcell, and Jeff Gammage spent a year examining violence in Philadelphia public schools, conducting more than 300 interviews with teachers, administrators, students and their families, district officials, police officers, court officials, and school-violence experts.
The Inquirer created a database to analyze more than 30,000 serious incidents - from assaults to robberies to rapes - that occurred over during the last five years. That information was supplemented by district and state data on suspensions, intervention and 911 calls. Reporters also examined police reports, court records, transcripts, contracts, and school security video.
For the series, photographers David Swanson, Ron Tarver and Sharon Gekoski-Kimmel as well as photo editor Michael Mercanti captured the faces of the victims of violence, both students and teachers.

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